Sometimes, we don’t realize the blessings we have until they’re taken away from us or if we see someone without them. Up to a point, quality education is also a blessing. Everyone has the right to it, no matter what.
However, some individuals with special needs require more assistance from experts.
What is Special Education?
Special education is education for students with emotional, behavioral, or cognitive impairments and students with intellectual, hearing, speech, vision, or learning disabilities.
It also serves students with high IQ and orthopedic or neurological impairments. Teachers use specialized techniques to work with children of different ages with various impairments or disabilities in special education.
Why Special Education Is the Right Career for you?
There are many reasons to choose special education as your career path. We have listed the best ones below:
- It is a meaningful and rewarding experience. Many see working with disabled children as their calling. They are thrilled to work at a place that pays well is gratifying and emotionally fulfilling.
- A special education degree opens the door for many opportunities. Working as a case manager, state supervisor, nonprofit director, or program coordinator is just some of the roles you can get with this degree. If you’re interested, you apply for an online special education degree in administration without attending a physical campus.
- Special education offers constant learning. Getting a degree is just the beginning. In your career, you may come across a subject of interest. It’ll be easier for you to transition towards it and study further to enhance your learning and improve your existing skills.
- Become part of a large community working as a collective to provide the best education for disabled children.
- As a professional in this field, you will interact with teachers, medical professionals, family members and develop close and meaningful ties with them.
With that said, let’s discuss some of the top career paths in special education administration.
- Special Education Teacher (K-12)
A special education teacher role is a challenging but satisfying job. It can be physically and emotionally draining to work with students who have disabilities.
It is also rewarding knowing you helped your students’ progress towards success. As a special education teacher, your primary responsibility is to plan lessons, manage children, and assign classwork and homework to kids.
You also have to grade assignments and tests. In addition, you have to keep track of your student’s progress and contact their parents to discuss the challenges the students might be facing.
Furthermore, you can teach at public or private schools at elementary, middle, or high school levels. Additionally, your students’ disabilities may vary from mild to severe.
Finally, you might be required to assist students with disabilities and help their parents understand ways of making communication more effective for them.
Academic Requirements for Special Education Teachers (K-12)
The minimum educational requirement for special education teachers is a state-approved bachelor’s degree. However, an approved master’s degree will set you apart from other candidates.
After completing your education, you need to get a teaching internship in a special education classroom. After finishing your training, you must take the state-required special education tests. If you pass the test, you can apply for your teaching license and apply for jobs.
Salary of Special Education Teachers
At the start of their career, special education teachers can make an average of over $35k per year. After gaining experience in the role, they can make an average of over $50k per year.
Meanwhile, top-level special education teachers can earn an average of over $75k per year.
- An Intervention Specialist
As an intervention specialist, you will help children with mild to moderate impairments or disabilities with life at school. You will also work as a classroom teacher or as a special educator with elementary or teenage students.
As an intervention specialist, your duties would encompass:
- Evaluating students to know their needs
- Developing and modifying IEPs for every student
- Counseling students
- Altering coursework to make it easier for struggling kids
- Discussing progress made with parents, teachers, and other professionals
Academic Requirements for Intervention Specialists
The minimum educational requirement for intervention specialists is a bachelor’s degree and a state-issued license.
Private schools do not require a license, but they prefer a bachelor’s degree. However, a master’s degree can propel your career growth and allow you to perform services like counseling independently.
Salary of an Intervention Specialist
At the start of their career, intervention specialists can make an average of $30k per year. After a few years in the field, they can make an average of over $45k per year.
Top-level intervention specialists with more than five years of experience can earn an average of over $70k per year.
- Special Education Director
As a special education director, you will manage students with special needs in your school. Your school will serve students whose disabilities range from mild to severe.
Students may have learning disabilities, autism spectrum disorders, speech delays, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), behavior problems, or developmental disabilities. They may also be physically disabled or have sensory impairments.
As a special education director, you’ll direct development programs compliant with federal, state, and local regulations. You will also supervise the teaching staff and employees who implement your programs.
In addition, you will be reporting to the parents about any progress their kids made and resolving any issues they may have. Also, you will be going to community meetings talking about your programs, overseeing budgets for special education, and submitting grant applications.
In addition, you will have the option to work in the public or private sector. Lastly, you can work at the school, district, state, or even federal level.
Academic Requirements for Special Education Directors
The minimum educational requirement to become a special education director is a master’s degree and state-issued license or certification.
Each state has laws about issuing a license or certificate to special education directors.
Salary of Special Education Directors
At the start of their career, special education directors can make an average of over $100k per year. After gaining experience in the field, they can make an average of over $120k per year.
Top-level directors with five years of experience can make an average of $130k per year.
Special education is critical in the educational industry. Without it, kids with disabilities or impairments would not be able to get quality education, which is not right.
Special education is a great way to help these students realize their full potential and attain a career with ample opportunities.
That’s not all; special education is emotionally rewarding as well. Knowing that you helped someone with disabilities or impairments progress in life is a great feeling.